I have been bursting with ideas lately, in addition to the few projects I’m working on already. The way I’m currently doing things, which consists of randomly progressing a tiny bit periodically on some of them, isn’t very productive or effective. In the hope of somehow organising my time and resources better, here’s the Big Fat List of Things I wish I had more time for:
- Illustrating a book of short stories by George Pluzhnikov
This is my first time illustrating a book for real. I’ve been working on this since October, and I’m mostly done. There are 35 short stories, each illustrated by a full-page drawing, and I’m currently creating decorative letter elements for the second part of the book. It hasn’t been decided how we’re going to handle the third part yet, and I’m a little nervous about it. Plus I might be doing the cover as well, and I’d rather not think about it right now because I might have a panic attack.
The people I’m working with requested a “sketchy” style, and it took me a long time and many do-overs to settle on how I’m going to do it. I’m pretty happy with the overall result – it’s close to what my default “handwriting” is, and I’ve added elements to unify the extremely different subjects I’ve had to tackle.
The crying girl illustration is for the short story “Svoloch” (roughly translated as “Bastard”).
2. Boonka – an animation short
Oh, the bane of my existence. I have written about this in my old blog a bit, but I think I’d better start over in here.
I started this YEARS ago. It went through a number of transformations, but never moved past a finished animatic. I currently have a full script, character, half an animatic, and a new idea of the overall look.
“Boonka” (that’s the name of the mane character, the tortoise-like creature pictured above, pushing her little cart through the desert) has been hanging over me like this big, heavy, guilt-ridden rain cloud. I have this slightly obsessive idea that I must finish it before really starting anything else. Only then can I be finally free to ride off into the beautiful sunset of “I FINALLY HAVE SOMETHING TO SHOW FOR THE TIME I STUDIED ANIMATION!!!1”.
3. Deeps (Working title for a fantasy graphic novel)
Hmm, I just realized that all my notes and sketches for this one are scattered over various notebooks, journals and daily-planners, with none of them in digital form on my computer.
I’ve wanted to do my own comic for many years (even longer than I’ve been “working” on Boonka). About 3 years ago I came up with a concept for a story, and epic fantasy adventure series of sorts. I have a beginning: the introduction and meeting of the two main characters. I have a very general idea of the types of situations and people/creatures they’ll encounter and will have to deal with. And an even hazier end, that I’m still undecided on.
I need to write the entire thing out, flesh out all the characters, make sure I don’t leave gaping plot-holes anywhere (my biggest peeve with such things). I’ve done a bunch of sketches, but I’m not happy with any of them. I have an idea of the visual style I want to go for, but I feel like I need a lot of practice till I can actually pull it off. I’m hoping it’ll develop and improve as I keep working on it, but like I already mentioned, I don’t think I’m at the starting point yet.
I like to think about it and figure story bits out while busy with other activities, like cleaning, cooking or rocking the baby to sleep, but the downside of that is that I’m not always able to jot down an idea or a solution when it comes to me.
4. Life-based web comic
This one I do happen to write down as inspiration strikes me. The main thing stopping me right now is the visuals. I still can’t decide how exactly I want it drawn.
I played around with it today, and first came up with something like this:
I don’t like it though, it feels too restricted and stiff. I tried loosening it up a bit with spaghetti arms and an overall cartoonier look, but it needs to be a lot more unified. Back to the drawing board with you.
So far I have around 5 ideas to work with, which is clearly not enough for anything, but still an okay start I think. Ideally, this would be a weekly comic.
5. Crocheted Lullaby animation short
Okay, this one is a bit crazy. Just a little bit! A stop motion animation, made entirely by crocheting!! *excited breathing*
It’s really quite simple! First, I need to finish writing the lullaby, as I’m roughly halfway through. I want it to be sweet and simple, with the words rolling off the tongue. (So far the words stutter and stumble quite a lot, but I’m getting there.)
Second, as this is the polar opposite of Boonka, I need to find someone to compose the tune, and hopefully, create the music as well (in Boonka the music and sound effects are secondary, so I can start looking for the music/sound guy while/after working on the actual animation). I even kind of have a person in mind that might do it.
From that point it’s easy: designing the chars, making sure the crochet idea is even viable, storyboarding, animatic, and mountains of crochet materials 😀 Piece of cake really!
So for the near future my plan is as follows:
- Finish illustrating the book. This one is my top priority, but as the calls and decisions aren’t mine, and I haven’t been given the assignments for the next part, it will most likely stretch out over an unknown period of time, so I will continue working on my own projects simultaneously.
- During the remaining #Mermay I will continue experimenting with comic styles for my “weekly life comic” and hopefully come up with a better name for it.
- Starting June, I’ll continue doodling and posting daily, but will dive full on into Boonka, as my illustration commitment lets me. I’ll also make a more detailed plan 🙂
How do you deal with prioritising and organising? Do you also want to do all the things all at the same time? How do you deal with multiple projects?